Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia on the Commemoration of the National Press Day 2024, February 20, 2024

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 20 Februari 2024
Category: Remarks @en
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Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
Good afternoon,
May peace be upon us,
Om swastiastu,
Namo buddhaya,
Greeting by virtue.

Speaker of the People’s Representatives Assembly (MPR) and Heads of State Institutions;

Ministers and Vice Ministers of Onward Indonesia Cabinet, Commander of the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI),

Chief of the National Police (Polri), Ambassadors of friendly countries, Acting Governor of Special Region of Jakarta;

Chairperson of the Press Council Ibu Ninik Rahayu and Board of Management of the Press Council;

Chairperson of the Central Indonesian Journalists Association Bapak Hendry Ch Bangun and Board of Management, all Press Figures, Journalists;

Ladies and Gentlemen.

Before I miss, let me respond to the complaint from Pak Hanry about Pancasila Press Building in Yogyakarta. Next week at the latest, everything will be checked in the field. Ministry of Public Works and Housing will do the construction. I haven’t received the confirmation of the budget but I confirm the construction will begin.

At first, on behalf of the people and Government, I would like to congratulate you all on the National Press Day 2024. I convey my gratitude to all press members for your consistency to stand side by side with the people in democratic life. I also thank all press for overseeing the recent General Elections 2024.

I often receive sharp criticism such as pictures of my unique face on the covers of media and magazines as well as on social media. This criticism brought excitement, but it is alright. It’s no matters for me. Then, my grandchild complained to me, “Mbah (Grandpa), why does your picture look ugly?”. Well, this is a part of my respect for freedom of press, expression, and opinion.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Press Members,

The Government realized that challenges facing the press in this digital era. Therefore, the Government keeps striving to support press ecosystem which is adaptive to respect freedom of press. As I said on last year’s commemoration of National Press Day, the Government pays more attention to qualified journalism and sustainability of conventional media industry. After long time wait and discussion, finally yesterday I signed the Presidential Regulation on the responsibility of digital platform to support qualified journalism, known as Presidential Regulation on Publisher Rights.

It was a long process and full of different opinions. I know it was exhausting for all parties. It was difficult to find the same point. And before I signed the regulation, I also listened to press members’ aspirations. It was not a unanimous aspiration because of different aspirations between conventional media and digital platform. Big digital platform had different aspirations and we must consider the implication. As we had point of understanding as well as enforcement from the Press Council, representatives of press companies, and representatives of media association, eventually yesterday I signed the regulation.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I need to remind us all of the initiation of this regulation. We wanted to build qualified journalism, far from negative contents. Journalism should bring education for the progress of Indonesia. We also wanted to make sure the sustainability of national media industries. We wanted just collaboration among press companies and digital platform. We wanted to provide a clear general framework for the collaboration.

This regulation does not intend to undermine freedom of press. I emphasize that Publisher Rights was born from the will and initiative of press members. The Government does not control the press contents. The Government controls business relations among press companies and digital platform with the spirit to upgrade qualified journalism. If necessary, I remind you about the implementation of this regulation. We still have to anticipate future risks, particularly during the transition period of the implementation of this regulation, both response from digital platform and from service user community.

Regarding press companies facing difficult times in the era of digital platform, the Government also pays attention to find solution and affirmative policy for local press companies. I also call for the Ministry of Communications and informatics to prioritize government ads expenditure for press companies. I repeatedly said that the expenditure for short term bearing. Indeed, this does not solve the problem as a whole. Press companies and Government still have to think about how to face this digital transformation.

To all content creators, don’t worry about the Presidential Regulation. I assured you that the regulation does not apply for content creators. You can continue your collaboration with digital platform. It does not matter.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Press Members,

Finally, I would like to convey two messages to you. First, the press was expected to be one of the pillars of democracy. The press must become a shared home to clarify information. Press must provide news with real facts, not making it up, not making assumptions, not as if it existed. Second, I hope that press companies can think about concrete and strategic steps, keep innovating to be adaptive in responding to global changes, stand tall independently amidst the onslaught of global competition.

That concludes my remarks today.

Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.


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